SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) -Downtown Shreveport is slowly starting to see new life. People are coming in and purchasing old buildings to help re-develop the area.
One of those people is iARCHiTECTURE owner Jeff Spikes, who recently bought an old building on 408 Cotton Street.
“It’s a lot more efficient to reuse building stock that’s already there,” he said. “I mean all these materials, this old wood, all this old brick, they just don’t make things like that anymore so it’s actually a resource that I think we have that we need to take advantage of."
The building use to be an old garage. The main floor is 12,000 square feet that Spikes plans to renovate to include a kitchen for his ice cream business Sweetport. The floor will also house his business’s food truck when it’s not in service and there will also be a workshop in that space as well.
There are two other spaces on the main floor that will be available for Lease while the 5,000 square foot mezzanine upstairs will house loft style apartments.
“It’s the kind of structure that you can just let it be what it wants to be as you’re renovating it,” he said. “Peeling back the layers you just find things you don’t realize (that are) cool until you actually get into it.”
Executive Director of Shreveport’s Downtown Development Authority, Liz Swaine says Spikes has been eyeing this building for quite some time.
“On a building like this you look at it and you go ‘oh I can’t see anything other than what’s there right now’,” she said. “It takes a really creative kind of person to be able to look at a building and go ‘I can see something wonderful’ and Jeff is definitely one of those people.”
Swaine says along with Spike’s project there are others in the works for the downtown area. She says someone has purchased one of their old parking garage buildings and currently has plans to do some unique things with the space. Swaine says they’ll release more details about that space to the public soon.